by Annie

santapollonia1Saint Apollonia is the Patron Saint of Dentistry. 15 years ago, after practicing Orthodontics for 30 years, the “Two Tourists” were on a 6 month self guided tour of Italia. One of the goals was to find a church or statue or some type of memorial to her.

Saint Apollonia was a martyr circa 250AD, who, as the legend goes, had her teeth removed before giving up her life for Christianity at the hands of the struggling Romans. The TTs thought that they had found her in the first weeks of adventure. However, the church in Trento turned out to be Saint Apollonaria. A wholly different saint.

Then, one day while wandering through Trastevere in Rome, the TTs came upon “Piazza S. Apollonia…. so excited, but also confused as the church in the square was Santa Margherita. An inquiry at the café confirmed the church.

There it was, a very small chapel dedicated to the Patron Saint of Dentistry. The curator was so excited to have someone inquire about this special part of his church. He had a difficult time finding a pray card to her, but after rummaging through a few dusty drawers was able to come up with one.

Fast forward 15 years. Piazza S. Apollonia is of course still there, but sadly the doors of Santa Margherita are “chiusi,” and the neighborhood is a little run down. Hopefully the Dental Society of Rome will realize that her chapel is no longer accessible and will soon move it to a place of prominence, which she deserves.


– Contributed by Michael Yaccino, dal Colorado, an reader. Many thanks! -ed.

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